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Fast Acting Glucose in Classrooms

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CanIcallmymom has 4 years experience .

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I asked my district nurse if we have a policy for classrooms to have any fast acting glucose in the classrooms in case of a lockdown. I was basically told the students need to keep it on them by this point (HS). I'm not particularly happy with that answer for two reasons:

1. I feel like this is a HUGE safety issue. What if a student is sent by a teacher to another class/office/etc and didn't take their bag for what was expected to be a quick trip.

2. They're still kids. They forget stuff. All. The. Time.

I'm planning on discussing the issue with my principal instead to see if this is something they can purchase for the classrooms for over the Summer, but it needs to be pretty cost effective. We have approximately 75-ish teachers. What do you do in your school? 

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ruby_jane has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in ICU/community health/school nursing.

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First, kudos to you for thinking this through.

In our orientation before school started, we had a diabetic educator who blew my socks off. I used to just stock some .99 icing sugar (the gel) for those kinds of things.

But she said that what the kid needs is glucose, not the sucrose that will have to be converted to glucose (thereby wasting time the kid doesn't have). I believe the Brits and Canadians have icing products made of glucose sugar but I haven't found any here.

So it is the glucose gels or tabs that you will need, and these do have expiration dates (but does unopened glucose ever expire??)

I see your problem. You can't guarantee from semester to semester where a diabetic will be in high school. You also can't guarantee they'll have their own, so stay strong on that. Good luck!!

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CanIcallmymom has 4 years experience.

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1 minute ago, ruby_jane said:

First, kudos to you for thinking this through.

In our orientation before school started, we had a diabetic educator who blew my socks off. I used to just stock some .99 icing sugar (the gel) for those kinds of things.

But she said that what the kid needs is glucose, not the sucrose that will have to be converted to glucose (thereby wasting time the kid doesn't have). I believe the Brits and Canadians have icing products made of glucose sugar but I haven't found any here.

So it is the glucose gels or tabs that you will need, and these do have expiration dates (but does unopened glucose ever expire??)

I see your problem. You can't guarantee from semester to semester where a diabetic will be in high school. You also can't guarantee they'll have their own, so stay strong on that. Good luck!!

Thanks RJ! Always so helpful.

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tining has 26 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in School Nurse.

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I made baggies of fast acting sugars  - parent provided - for each class that has a diabetic in has them.

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BrisketRN has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN.

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Fun size bags of skittles. It's the fast acting sugar of choice for my two diabetics.  I send a juice box in the first aid kit for field trips.  One or two bags in each first aid kit.  If you're worried about others eating it maybe put the packages in a white envelope marked "fast acting glucose" or "emergency diabetes glucose."  Or packets of sugar would be cheap too though it might be harder to figure out how much sugar is actually in a packet.

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CanIcallmymom has 4 years experience.

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Just now, BrisketRN said:

Fun size bags of skittles. It's the fast acting sugar of choice for my two diabetics.  I send a juice box in the first aid kit for field trips.  One or two bags in each first aid kit.  If you're worried about others eating it maybe put the packages in a white envelope marked "fast acting glucose" or "emergency diabetes glucose."  Or packets of sugar would be cheap too though it might be harder to figure out how much sugar is actually in a packet.

Great ideas, thank you so much. 

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by cid1 Member

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I make diabetic kits for all my planned teachers per the kiddos schedule, then I add PE, exploratory, some of the aides, music wing, and library. I have been doing 8 glucose tabs for fast acting, peanut butter crackers, and 1 carton of no refrigeration needed chocolate milk. Short acting, plus long acting, plus protein. For cost savings next year I will switch to packs of smarties in each bag. Our high school does not do this, but they do not see their diabetics on a routine basis, but here in MS, All their stuff is in my office and they are not allowed to carry backpacks.

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Mavnurse17 has 3 years experience as a BSN, RN.

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This is a good question as I've run into a similar situation.  We (HS campus) had a lockdown at my school last year and one of my T1D kiddos was in her classroom without her supplies.  What are supposed to do in that situation?  The teacher had the emergency care plan, but no supplies.  

They ended up bringing her to me despite the lock down.

There are ~300 classrooms on my campus.  How would I stock emergency supplies for every classroom?  Some of my kiddos switch classes mid-semester, some have "floating" class periods where they could be in a different class every day, so I would indeed need to stock every room to account for all possibilities.  

I just don't know. I try to highly encourage the kiddos at this age to keep their emergency supplies on them. 

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JenTheSchoolRN is a BSN, RN and specializes in School nursing.

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https://www.amazon.com/Welchs-Fruit-Snacks-Mixed-Ounce/dp/B0036FEB4W

Welch's fruit snack packs - my fast acting sugar of choice and easy to put in an emergency kit. 

I also encourage any HS aged diabetic students to always have a fast acting sugar or glucose tabs on them - heck I start this with parents in MS. But yep, kids forget. Heck, adults still forget. 

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On 3/6/2020 at 7:24 AM, BrisketRN said:

Fun size bags of skittles. It's the fast acting sugar of choice for my two diabetics.  

^^^  x 100. 

I know a Type 1 diabetic who is now an adult and she swears these 3 things work for her: Skittles or  Starburst Candy and/or SunnyD drink.  The Skittles and Starburst you can get in fun sizes.  Regular size Starbursts are nicely wrapped individually and they're easy to carry.

Sunny D drinks to come in smaller sizes (I believe 12 ozs), but they could easily stash 1-2 in their desk or locker or the teacher might be able to stash them away somewhere.

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Cas1in72 has 26 years experience and specializes in school nursing/ maternal/child hospital based.

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2 hours ago, Mergirlc said:

^^^  x 100. 

I know a Type 1 diabetic who is now an adult and she swears these 3 things work for her: Skittles or  Starburst Candy and/or SunnyD drink.  The Skittles and Starburst you can get in fun sizes.  Regular size Starbursts are nicely wrapped individually and they're easy to carry.

Sunny D drinks to come in smaller sizes (I believe 12 ozs), but they could easily stash 1-2 in their desk or locker or the teacher might be able to stash them away somewhere.

Most of my diabetics have glucose tabs but have also kept skittles ( 15  candies per diabetic educator directive)  for a fast acting.  I like to keep  them in emergency bags.  How many Starburst do you use?

 

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